Thursday, December 27, 2007

The quintessential joie de vivre

BlogCritics Magazine reviews the 28-disc mega-box set A&E Romance Classics Collections 1 and 2 (already mentioned on BrontëBlog). Concerning Jane Eyre 1997, included in the collection, the reviewer says:

Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre is one of my favorite books of all time, and I have seen several filmed adaptations of the novel. To me, Edward Rochester is the quintessential romantic hero (who I discuss further in a Blogcritics article) and I am quite picky about adaptations of the novel. I have always held the BBC version of it with Timothy Dalton as the standard by which all other Jane Eyres must be judged. I found this version, although much abridged from the novel (and BBC production), quite well done, with Samantha Morton’s narration providing cohesion to the story. Ciarán Hinds creates nowhere as complex a Rochester as Dalton but Morton’s Jane Eyre is excellent. (Barbara Barnett)
Creative Loafing lists the 2007 top ten of theatre productions in the Tampa Bay area. The Gorilla Theatre's production of Polly Teale's Jane Eyre is one of them:
6 Jane Eyre. Katherine Michelle Tanner was plain Jane and Shana Perkins was her alter ego, an unnamed beauty who longed to be free of her attic cage, to be allowed the untrammeled expression of all her capacities, female and human. In Polly Teale's adaptation of Charlotte Brontë's novel, Jane acted in front of us and "Bertha" upstairs danced the inner meaning of Jane's behavior, from cowed humility to exultant joie de vivre. The Gorilla Theatre production featured Nancy Cole's intelligent directing, Robin Gordon's thrilling choreography, and the triumphant return to the stage of Ned Averill-Snell as Rochester. Brontë's feminism was exceedingly well served. (Mark E. Leib)
The Daily Star reviews Elif Shafak's The Bastard of Istambul and makes one of those crazy Brontë-meets-whatever references that we love so much:
Elif Shafak was the first writer in Turkey charged with denigrating Turkish identity for the words she put in the mouths and minds of fictional characters. When "The Bastard of Istanbul" was finally published, after the charges against Shafak were dropped, the book turned out to be a rollicking account of adolescent anxiety. Imagine "Wuthering Heights" crossed with Carson McCullers. (Kaelen Wilson-Goldie)
In other news: PJorge, the Spanish translator of Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair, talks about Charlotte Brontë's novel Jane Eyre in this interesting post in Spanish. The Music Box reviews Genesis's 1977 album Wind & Wuthering and En Boktoks Tankar posts about Svindlande Höjder, i.e. Wuthering Heights, in Swedish.

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2 comments to “ The quintessential joie de vivre ”
Anonymous said...
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I've watched the other interpretations of Jane Eyre, movie versions, and they don't even come close to the "Jane Eyre" BBC 2006. The other version I believe the one from 1997, shows Jane as the infantile child ( smiling childishly all the time).Jane wasn't naive little girl, she was in this era (when woman were uneducated), educated teacher. The Rochester on the other hand, is clumsy and looks like her grandpa so it produces the effect of perverted lust instead of love. There is one sitting on the fence? And the one riding on the straight path and suddenly for no reason falling on the ground. On the other hand Dalton's Rochester is to theatrical and unreal. While his Jane looks 30 years old, looking at the studio made, burned Thornfield. I think nobody in right mind will think the other versions were better than the one from 2006, unless you just want to be a different or plain spiteful, or your mom was playing Jane or grandpa Rochester. But these are the other reasons except the pure artistic. Jane Eyre BBC 2006 portrayes real people, made from flesh and bone, having problems, disappointment, and with real feelings, acting like one of us.

Cristina said...
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There are many people who love other versions of Jane Eyre and not so much Jane Eyre 2006. Personally, I tend to agree with some of the things you said, yet you have to remember that films - regardless of their similarity to the novel - bring a lot of new readers to the novel and, on one level, they're worth it just because of that reason. It could also be argued that in a way they keep the book alive too.

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